Please could someone have a look at my diet and see what they think

(44 Posts)
BranchingOut Sat 24-May-14 22:11:36

I am 5'7 and weigh 12st, so would like to loose a bit of weight - but not too much.

Any views on whether my diet is giving me enough of everything I would need or where it could be improved - I tend towards wanting to cut my carbs down, but cant face the horror of low carb bootcamp! So small tweaks is what I am after...

Breakfast:
Dorset cereals museli smallish portion with full fat milk.

2-3 times a week I will have a piece of toast with lurpak and marmite or marmalade.
Mug of tea

Lunch:

Monday - pret salmon sandwich, crisps, apple or mango pot
Tuesday - pret salmon sandwich, crisps, apple, or mango pot
Wednesday - cafe aubergine dish and salad
Thursday - green salad with avocado, chicken, peppers, pine-nuts, tomato etc Fruit.
Friday - green salad with avocado, mozzarella, peppers, pine-nuts, tomato etc Fruit.
Sat - Cheese and chicken toastie, couscous, salad. Fruit.
Sun - green salad with avocado, halloumi, peppers, pine-nuts, tomato etc. Fruit.

snack
Office - occasional chocolate biscuit, maybe 3 per week?
Out: 1 - 2 times a week- latte and brownie or similar
Home - most days I might have a crumpet or bowl of cereal if hungry. Sometimes a glass of milk. Piece of fruit.

Supper

1 night - soup or eggs.
2 nights - home cooked asian food which is meat and rice based
1 night - fishcakes, salad etc
1 night - roast or sausage/mash with veg, including greens, spinach etc.
1 night - pasta with homemade bolognaise sauce
1 night - chicken stirfry with veg

Drinks - weak tea or water
2 glasses of wine per week.

Don't smoke or drink juice, squash or fizzy drinks. No other lattes etc.

Take a multivitamin and fish oil on an irregular basis.

BranchingOut Sat 24-May-14 22:15:03

Thanks.

guineapig1 Sat 24-May-14 22:16:55

Not qualified to comment but watching with interest as my diet is pretty similar and I am desperate to drop about a stone. I eat loads of fruit and am trying to cut down on crisps etc. chocolate isn't so much of an issue for me as I don't really have a sweet tooth but love savoury stuff and carbs! I also can't face the thought of low carbing so am just trying to increase healthy foods and just eat a bit less pasta, rice, potatoes etc and limiting wine to weekends. Need to start exercising more too!

HarriettandBob Sat 24-May-14 22:22:44

Lose the crisps and replace full fat milk with semi skimmed or skimmed. Porridge instead of muesli.

prawnypoos Sat 24-May-14 22:37:57

No keep with the full fat milk. There is nothing wrong with it! There is nothing wrong with full fat anything, it sounds like you are having everything in moderation.

Maybe ditch the crisps one day?

guineapig1 Sat 24-May-14 22:42:20

See prawn that is my instinct too, I don't really buy in to the whole low fat culture

HarriettandBob Sat 24-May-14 23:00:05

Actually you are probably right, and using semi skimmed milk is the only "low fat" part of my diet. I never choose low fat yoghurts or rubbish spread instead of butter. Ignore my previous milk advice! I do have half milk / half water in my porridge though but I like it like that.

prawnypoos Sat 24-May-14 23:00:11

I hate it. Butter and full fat everything never did our grandparents any harm! There were no obesity epidemics back then either.

People have well and truly bought in to the low fat market though and I think it's here to stay sad

I remember them muller lights! Yuck, you could taste the chemical crap they had put in. Bork

prawnypoos Sat 24-May-14 23:01:53

That's personal preference. I don't think semi/skimmed milk is the worst ever example of low fat

HarriettandBob Sat 24-May-14 23:05:08

I eat a lot of pasta but hardly any bread. Also oatcakes are a good snack maybe instead of a crumpet?

DippyEggNSolders Sat 24-May-14 23:12:46

Watching with interest.

I reduce bread as much as I can, and try and have carbs as my main evening meal, but can't cut out or do low carbing to the rule book!

guineapig1 Sat 24-May-14 23:16:41

Yes you are absolutely right. I refuse to buy margarine or spread, only proper butter. Same goes for yoghurt. Trouble is I take this one step further... Sadly there a few dishes which don't improve with a generous slosh of cream!

80sMum Sat 24-May-14 23:24:36

I would ditch the muesli, the crisps, the cheese, the avocado and the fruit 'pots' and replace them with porridge (made with water, the Scottish way), fresh fruit & veg, pulses, lentils and grilled or steamed fish. The rest looks fine to me.

ppeatfruit Sun 25-May-14 09:25:13

If your supper is late try to eat before 7.30ish p.m. Also try eating your fruit before your sandwich that way it's better for digestion.

If you want to lose weight, a good way is not to mix protein and carbs at the same meal e.g. have a salmon or cheese salad on its own or a salad sandwich. So you can still have your carbs i don't eat wheat but i eat rye bread and whole rice, quinoa etc.

I lost 3 stone doing the above and dh does the opposite so has 6 stone to lose!!

BranchingOut Sun 25-May-14 09:31:22

Thanks. For clarification, the 'mango fruit pot' is just fresh mango in a pot.

I will look into oatcakes.

Will try to ditch crisps - am not usually a crisp eater but have got back into the habit recently. Would cashews be better?

Avocado - I want to keep it as I have heard it is v good for skin and it makes all the green leaves bearable for me!

Spottybra Sun 25-May-14 09:33:13

I have lattes in place of a meal. Could you do this? Or maybe start the 5:2?

HVB79 Sun 25-May-14 09:35:02

Have you tried myfitnesspal? Recording everything for a few weeks might give you some ideas what to cut down. I remember being quite surprised how calorific pret sandwiches were... I agree with the porridge suggestion too.

BranchingOut Sun 25-May-14 09:37:32

I decided that the 5:2 would not be for me as I lose my lovely personality and become snarly and irrational if I have to so much as eat a late lunch...

I think that I need to make more of an effort with taking lunch into work - skip Pret one day. They know me in there now!

KellyHopter Sun 25-May-14 09:37:58

Don't ditch the avocado!

BranchingOut Sun 25-May-14 09:41:14

I tried MFP for a while, but it was just keeping a record rather than making any better choices. My diet is actually better than it was as I used to have lots more cheese toasties where the green salads are now!

Will also look at portion control for evening meals.

Nasturtium89 Sun 25-May-14 09:42:47

'Low fat' stuff is bad because they add sugar etc to make things taste good. Skimmed milk just has fat skimmed off, nothing added, it's not a 'low fat' food. At least that's my understanding! You wouldn't say a cucumber is bad because it's low fat, would you?

ppeatfruit Sun 25-May-14 09:43:35

I agree with Kelly about the avocado but half a day is better than a whole one grin

I think you need to up your protein levels and take out processed foods.
So breakfast, poached or boiled egg on toast instead of muesli.
Lunch, replace crisps with popcorn. Swop the sandwiches for soup and protein-rich salad
Have hummus and crudités or a small handful of nuts instead of biscuits or brownies if you can. Otherwise it's all good!

Sophieelmer Sun 25-May-14 09:50:50

The simplest thing is to cut your portion sizes, loose one aspect of your meal ie crisps from lunch, cheese from your toastie. Or stick with the same but reduce how much you eat. Most effective way of doing this is to bin an aspect of shop bought lunch before you begin to eat. Cut a corner off your sarnie and bin a handful of crisps. Then tuck in

DotToDott Sun 25-May-14 09:53:46

i'd say your lunches are fine if maintaining your weight but if you want to lose a bit you could:

take the crisps away or go for lower calorie crisps like quavers or something, or a handful of savoury popcorn.

have an open sandwich to cut the carbs a little.

try snacking on veg instead of fruit.

either chicken or cheese in your toastie, not both.

have either cous cous or your toastie, again both is uneccessary.

sounds like you eat healthily though in general though.

BranchingOut Sun 25-May-14 09:54:31

Good suggestions, taking.
I was doing the eggs for breakfast thing for a while, but then started to feel a bit 'egged out'. Will try to get back to it once or twice a week. Same thing with porridge, I ate it for years but then started to feel a bit fed up with it.

Will try to up the crudités, as I do enjoy carrot etc.

Technical question - is a latte with whipped cream on top and sugar in it better for you than a latte with a chocolate brownie on the side? smile

itsonlysubterfuge Sun 25-May-14 09:54:48

It's hard to judge, you could be having huge portions of food which you view as small or normal. Try actually weighing your cereal and measuring your milk one morning and see what it is your actually eating. The kind of food you are eating seems okay. There are a few things you could cut down that are higher in fats that would help you lose some weight, ie omitting the pine nuts from your salad. You haven't mentioned any exercise that you do? Your diet seems high in calories if you aren't doing any exercise at all.

On Saturday, do you have a toastie and couscous? I would omit the couscous (or toastie), it is just a grain like bread and is a lot of calories to have both together, especially for lunch.

MrsBartowski Sun 25-May-14 09:56:31

Do you fit in any exercise?

You diet doesn't seem that bad so maybe you need to look at exercise as an option to losing weight?

BranchingOut Sun 25-May-14 10:03:25

I added the pine nuts in order to up the protein content of the salad and make it sufficiently satisfying.

I think my preference is to go lower carb rather than lower fat, as I have already seen some small results from that.

Exercise is tricky due to childcare, DH's long/irregular hours and other commitments (postgraduate course alongside work). Walk 10 minutes to station and 10 minutes back at least 3 days per week, I go swimming once per week, i also do other walks too (but slower, due to 4 year old). Avoid using car where possible.

Artandco Sun 25-May-14 10:06:18

I think the snacks are main problem here. You say occasionally choc at work, maybe 3 times a week, and occasional latte and brownie x2 a week. To me occasional is once every month maybe, not 5 days out of 7. Plus crumpets or cereal as snack daily

I would try and ditch the snacks all together. Keep the odd latte out but don't buy brownies with it. If you up food at mealtimes you shouldn't be hungry for snacks.

To me diet is low on fats and protein at certain meals. Ie breakfast of jut toast or museli probably leaves you hungry by 10am. Keeping it similar I would half the museli amount but add crushed nuts and seeds ie walnuts, linseed, pumpkin seeds etc, nuts and seeds far more filling. Add a sliced banana and some berries. So you have had a proper 'meal' before leaving.

At lunch sandwich is fine, ditch crisps and eat the fruit first as suggested.

It's just been proven that its far better to have 2/3 decent meals daily than smaller and constant snacking. Your body waits until you have finished meal to start digestion. Most takes 3-5+ hours to digest. So if every few you snack it has to stop to start digestion again of new food. So old food is half digested, new food needs digesting and body doesn't know what to do

prawnypoos Sun 25-May-14 10:10:39

I've worked in dairies. I know what they put in semi/skimmed milk to stop it from looking grey! Plus I grew up on a dairy farm and the milk was so much better from the tank. Yum.

DotToDott Sun 25-May-14 10:38:30

i'd say your lunches are fine if maintaining your weight but if you want to lose a bit you could:

take the crisps away or go for lower calorie crisps like quavers or something, or a handful of savoury popcorn.

have an open sandwich to cut the carbs a little.

try snacking on veg instead of fruit.

either chicken or cheese in your toastie, not both.

have either cous cous or your toastie, again both is uneccessary.

sounds like you eat healthily though in general though.

ppeatfruit Sun 25-May-14 11:04:15

artandco If you follow the Paul Mckenna way of eating you eat ONLY when you're hungry and stop when you're satisfied or full (which I do and have lost 3 stone and am still maintaining). You find that you eat more often than 3 meals a day but they're not big meals because your stomach shrinks (it is the size of a grapefruit anyway).

I literally can't eat the amount I used to.

Artandco Sun 25-May-14 12:43:21

Ppeat - I don't need to loose weight, I need to gain. I cant say i ever feel hunger. If i waited until hungry i could easily go 3 days plus without eating. Snacking all day with small meals is what iv been told to do to gain weight, and on just 3 meals a day I can't keep it on. Hence suggesting 3 meals only to op

ppeatfruit Sun 25-May-14 12:55:23

Do you drink many caffeinated drinks Art ? Because it's also easy to put on weight when you are aware of your hunger. Maybe you could look at the Blood Type WOE to help you gain.

Artandco Sun 25-May-14 13:01:24

Nope, no caffeinated/ fizzy drinks. No tea/ coffee either

PersonOfInterest Sun 25-May-14 13:16:58

I have the dorset muesli. They aren't all equal though. Check if you've got one without added sugar some of them do, some don't.

You could actually weigh your portion and see if it matches the suggested portion on the pack. Its quite heavy and easy to go way over.

You could try cutting down treats to a couple a week. I'm including lattes, biscuits and brownies as a treats.

Do you exercise? You may find one short intense exercise session (without an increase in eating) may make a difference.

Or, do a modified 5:2. For eg skip breakfast two days a week.

MrsCripps Sun 25-May-14 13:20:47

I agree with Art
You are eating a lot of calorific "snacks"- the latte and brownie could contain 500 calories plus -likewise the crumpets and butter.

I kept snacks to about 100 calories or less or even ditch them completely. Cut out the crisps, crumpets, toast and brownies and have once a week as a treat.
Breakfast should be more filling - porridge and fruit or spinach omelette etc

ppeatfruit Sun 25-May-14 13:53:54

I lost my weight without weighing any food or counting calories (I've never counted calories or eaten shxx low fat 'diet 'foods) or doing more than the usual daily exercise, see Paul Mckenna (sorry for going on about it but it does work because it changes our attitude to food and eating completely).

'Normal' diets don't work because of the mentality involved IMO. and E. The starting and stopping of them and the feeling of failure.

Interesting that you don't feel hunger Art.

BranchingOut Sun 25-May-14 15:46:42

Take on board what you say about the snacks! In my defence, I don't have all of those every week, but the description in my OP is the worst case scenario of what I might do in terms of snacking in my usual lifestyle.

crazykittensmile Sun 25-May-14 15:47:59

Some brands of Dorset cereal are full of sugar, it is mostly naturally-occuring due to the amount of dried fruit added but it still means the calorie-count is high. Replacing muesli with porridge would be a good idea.

How much avocado are you eating? Avocado is quite high in calories (a small one is about 160 calories, larger ones are more) so maybe just have half. You don't say if you use salad dressing but if so some of these are really high in calories.

Crumpets are fairly low-calorie (about 100 iirc) so probably better than the bowl of cereal. Maybe you could replace the fruit for carrot sticks or something lower in sugar - fruit is good but it is high in sugar and won't leave you feeling full for long. Crisps definitely out if possible, you could replace them with popcorn - a bag of popcorn is about half the calories of a bag of regular crisps and is one of your portions of whole-grain.

That brownie you have with your latte is probably fairly high calorie though, I don't know where you are going for it but some coffee shops have the calorie count of their snacks listed at the counter (I know Costa do) so could you find a lower-cal option? Or on those days try and have a smaller portion of dinner.

Agree with other posters to check your portion control for meal-times as well, if you're trying to lose weight maybe just look at where you can have less (eg: one sausage/fishcake instead of two). Moving to a smaller plate can help trick the brain into thinking the portion is bigger as well!

fatlazymummy Sun 25-May-14 20:53:42

For lunch I would have a wholemeal pitta instead of a sandwich, filled with the salmon (or eggs/ cheese) and salad.
No need to stop eating cheese (a good source of calcium and protein) but I would weigh it out (1 oz = approx 120 cals)
I also weigh or measure things like pasta, porridge oats, etc.
For a snack ,how about houmous or cottage cheese with carrot and cucumber sticks. Both are nice and filling and will boost your veg intake.
Some Greek yogurt with a little bit of fresh fruit is also nice.
I always drink semi skimmed milk, because I hate full fat. It didn't affect my weight loss at all.

BranchingOut Mon 26-May-14 21:18:22

Thanks all, I will try to make a few changes and report back.

BoBoo Wed 28-May-14 11:10:07

Hey.

It seems a pretty balanced diet to me for the most part. I would echo the sentiments about exercise. I know it's hard with the time constraints, but you can find things to do at home (e.g. I'm doing Jilliam Michaels 30 day shred, which is only a 20 min workout) if you have the motivation. Since I've started it I've also found it easier to watch what I'm eating as I don't want to undo all the hard work.

In terms of small changes, do you have sugar in your drinks? You can cut that down/out or swap to something like xylitol (good for your teeth!). If you're cooking with rice, try swapping for brown rice and if having pasta try and limit your portion or go for more bolognaise than pasta and bulk out with salad.

Good luck.

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